While many are hoping the NBA will make the All-Star team selections public, commissioner Adam Silver thinks there’s no need for that.
Moreover, he believes the players are on his side.
“Yes, it would be more fun if we had that kind of (public) draft. On the other hand, I recognize that in picking a team to perform in the here and now, it’s a little different than drafting,” Silver told The Starters’ Tas Melas in London.
“There was a sense from the players that it’d put them in an impossible position where they’re picking one player over another, in part not because they necessarily think that player is better than another player. Maybe because they have a personal relationship with the player or they think that player will be a better complement to the players, and that invariably, if they just did it as a pure draft, guys will say, ‘I can’t believe such and such was selected before that player.”
The NBA is set to introduce its new All-Star Game format next month in L.A., which will see the top vote-getter from each conference be named the captain and select his teammates in a playground-style draft.
It was reported the league was leaning toward keeping the selections under wraps to protect the players’ egos and keep messy politics from spilling further into the public realm. Silver’s message is consistent with the report, though he did open the door to the selection process changing over time.
When Melas indicated the goal for the league should be to eventually televise the must-see event, Silver dismissed the notion, saying the goal was simply to improve the All-Star Game and that altering the format meets that criteria.
Several players have spoken out on the matter, with LeBron James and John Wall pushing for a public draft. Per the latest voting returns, James and Stephen Curry would be captains of their respective conferences.